Free Spirit (Khalid album)

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Free Spirit
Khalid - Free Spirit.png
Studio album by
ReleasedApril 5, 2019 (2019-04-05)
GenreR&B
Length57:13
LabelRCA
Producer
Khalid chronology
Suncity
(2018)
Free Spirit
(2019)
Singles from Free Spirit
  1. "Talk"
    Released: February 7, 2019

Free Spirit is the second studio album by Khalid, released on April 5, 2019, through RCA Records. It is the follow-up to his 2018 EP Suncity,[1] and includes the single "Talk".[2][3] Khalid also announced a short film directed by Emil Nava to accompany the album, which was released on April 3.[4] The album debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200.

Background[edit]

Khalid announced the title on social media on February 28. He had previously shown the van pictured on the cover in various posts.[5]

Short film[edit]

A short film accompanying the album was released on Khalid's YouTube channel on the same day of the album's release.[6]

Singles[edit]

"Talk" was released on February 7, 2019 as the album's lead single.[2] On March 7, "My Bad" was released with the album pre-order as a promotional single. "Self" was released on March 29, 2019.[7] On April 3, "Don't Pretend", featuring Safe, was released with the launch of Free Spirit Radio on Beats 1.[8]

The album also includes the singles "Better" and "Saturday Nights" from Khalid's 2018 EP Suncity.

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
Metacritic58/100[9]
Review scores
SourceRating
AllMusic2.5/5 stars[10]
Entertainment WeeklyC+[11]
The Guardian2/5 stars[12]
The Independent3/5 stars[13]
NME2/5 stars[14]
The Observer3/5 stars[15]
Pitchfork4.7/10[16]
Rolling Stone3/5 stars[17]
The Times2/5 stars[18]
Vice (Expert Witness)A−[19]

Free Spirit was met with mixed reviews. At Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from mainstream critics, the album has an average score of 58, based on 13 reviews.[9]

Reviewing for The Guardian, Alexis Petridis found the album less original than Khalid's previous work, with the singer having little new to add to the theme of anxiety explored in other "fretfully self-examining R&B", instead showing "a tendency to fall back on cliche". With regards to its musical aspect, the critic complained of a lengthy, "somnambulant pace", but observed some "great pop songs", like "Alive" and "My Bad".[12]

More positive was Robert Christgau, who wrote in his column for Vice that while Khalid's new "privileges and woes" may be foreign to most listeners, he "retains the gift of expressing his feelings in songs that cut star-time inevitabilities down to human scale", observing truisms in lyrics such as "Couldn't have known it would ever be this hard", "I didn't text you because I was workin'", and "If the love feels good it'll work out". Christgau also pointed out that "because Khalid now enjoys access to pricier musical materials than when he was in high school, the hooks pack more texture than tune, making this the rare album that comes fully into its own when you up the volume."[19]

Commercial performance[edit]

Free Spirit debuted atop the US Billboard 200 with 202,000 album-equivalent units (including 85,000 pure album sales) in its first week. It is Khalid's first US number-one album.[20]

Track listing[edit]

No.TitleWriter(s)Producer(s)Length
1."Intro"
Digi3:32
2."Bad Luck"
3:51
3."My Bad"D'Mile2:43
4."Better"
3:49
5."Talk"Disclosure3:17
6."Right Back"
  • Stargate
  • Kosiak
  • Riley
  • Digi
  • Charlie Handsome
3:35
7."Don't Pretend" (featuring Safe)
2:45
8."Paradise"2:54
9."Hundred"
  • Robinson
  • Ari Leff
  • Hill
  • Chammas
  • Jordan Palmer
  • Vojtesak
  • Hill
  • Digi
  • Charlie Handsome
4:37
10."Outta My Head" (with John Mayer)
  • Hill
  • Digi
  • Mayer
2:57
11."Free Spirit"
  • Robinson
  • Chammas
  • Aarons
  • Vojtesak
  • Justin Scott Lucas
  • Digi
  • Charlie Handsome
3:02
12."Twenty One"
  • Robinson
  • Chammas
  • Vojtesak
  • Charlie Handsome
  • Digi
3:04
13."Bluffin'"
  • Robinson
  • Chammas
  • Vojtesak
  • Aarons
  • Digi
  • Charlie Handsome
3:19
14."Self"Hit-Boy3:49
15."Alive"
Hill2:51
16."Heaven"3:33
17."Saturday Nights" (bonus track)
  • Robinson
  • Vojtesak
  • Chammas
  • Charlie Handsome
  • Digi
3:29
Total length:57:13

Charts[edit]

Chart (2019) Peak
position
Australian Albums (ARIA)[22] 2
Austrian Albums (Ö3 Austria)[23] 15
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[24] 27
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)[25] 97
Canadian Albums (Billboard)[26] 1
Danish Albums (Hitlisten)[27] 4
Dutch Albums (Album Top 100)[28] 3
Finnish Albums (Suomen virallinen lista)[29] 7
French Albums (SNEP)[30] 42
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[31] 32
Irish Albums (IRMA)[32] 2
Italian Albums (FIMI)[33] 62
New Zealand Albums (RMNZ)[34] 2
Norwegian Albums (VG-lista)[35] 3
Portuguese Albums (AFP)[36] 40
Scottish Albums (OCC)[37] 34
South Korean Albums (Gaon)[38] 56
Spanish Albums (PROMUSICAE)[39] 86
Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[40] 3
Swiss Albums (Schweizer Hitparade)[41] 8
UK Albums (OCC)[42] 2
US Billboard 200[20] 1

Certifications[edit]

Region Certification Certified units/Sales
New Zealand (RMNZ)[43] Gold 7,500^

*sales figures based on certification alone
^shipments figures based on certification alone

References[edit]

  1. ^ Zidel, Alex (February 28, 2019). "Khalid Announces New Album "Free Spirit" With Cover Art & Release Date". HotNewHipHop. Retrieved March 1, 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Khalid & Disclosure Drop New Single 'Talk': Listen". Billboard. Retrieved March 1, 2019.
  3. ^ Darville, Jordan (February 28, 2019). "Khalid announces new album Free Spirit". The Fader. Retrieved March 1, 2019.
  4. ^ "Here it goes! I shot a short film for the album! ❤️ In theatres worldwide on April 3rd for ONE day only and includes an album listening!!! Tickets/more info coming soon! Love u guys". February 28, 2019. Retrieved March 1, 2019 – via Twitter.
  5. ^ "Khalid Announces New Album 'Free Spirit' & Release Date". HipHop-N-More. February 28, 2019. Retrieved March 1, 2019.
  6. ^ "Khalid Announces Sophomore Album 'Free Spirit,' Short Film". Rolling Stone. February 28, 2019.
  7. ^ Rowley, Glenn (March 26, 2019). "Khalid Announces New Track 'Self' From Upcoming 'Free Spirit' Album". Billboard. Retrieved March 28, 2019.
  8. ^ "Khalid Releases Silky New Track 'Don't Pretend,' Launches Free Spirit Radio on Beats 1". Billboard. Retrieved 2019-04-04.
  9. ^ a b "Free Spirit by Khalid". Metacritic. Retrieved April 5, 2019.
  10. ^ Kellman, Andy. "Free Spirit – Khalid". AllMusic. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  11. ^ Fitzmaurice, Larry (April 4, 2019). "Khalid fails to stand out on sluggish Free Spirit: EW review". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved April 5, 2019.
  12. ^ a b Petridis, Alexis (April 4, 2019). "Khalid: Free Spirit review – streaming star crashes into cliche". The Guardian. Retrieved April 5, 2019.
  13. ^ Brown, Helen (April 4, 2019). "Khalid, Free Spirit review: A perfectly credible record that lacks personality". The Independent. Retrieved April 5, 2019.
  14. ^ Spencer, Alex (April 3, 2019). "Khalid – 'Free Spirit' review". NME. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  15. ^ Joshi, Tara (April 7, 2019). "Khalid: Free Spirit review – an engaging follow-up". The Observer. Retrieved May 3, 2019.
  16. ^ Pierre, Alphonse (April 10, 2019). "Khalid: Free Spirit". Pitchfork. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  17. ^ Dolan, Jon (April 5, 2019). "Review: Khalid Looks Inward on 'Free Spirit'". Rolling Stone. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  18. ^ Hodgkinson, Will (April 5, 2019). "Khalid: Free Spirit review". The Times. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  19. ^ a b Christgau, Robert (April 19, 2019). "Robert Christgau on Khalid's Textured Anxiety". Vice. Retrieved April 20, 2019.
  20. ^ a b Caulfield, Keith (April 14, 2019). "Khalid's 'Free Spirit' Debuts at No. 1 on Billboard 200 Albums Chart". Billboard. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
  21. ^ "CDJapan : Free Spirit Khalid CD Album". CDJapan. Retrieved 4 May 2019.
  22. ^ "Australiancharts.com – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  23. ^ "Austriancharts.at – Khalid – Free Spirit" (in German). Hung Medien. Retrieved April 18, 2019.
  24. ^ "Ultratop.be – Khalid – Free Spirit" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved April 12, 2019.
  25. ^ "Ultratop.be – Khalid – Free Spirit" (in French). Hung Medien. Retrieved April 21, 2019.
  26. ^ "Khalid Chart History (Canadian Albums)". Billboard. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
  27. ^ "Danishcharts.dk – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 17, 2019.
  28. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Khalid – Free Spirit" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved April 12, 2019.
  29. ^ "Khalid: Free Spirit" (in Finnish). Musiikkituottajat – IFPI Finland. Retrieved April 14, 2019.
  30. ^ "Lescharts.com – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
  31. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Khalid – Free Spirit" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved April 12, 2019.
  32. ^ "Irish Albums Chart: 12 April 2019". Irish Recorded Music Association. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  33. ^ "Italiancharts.com – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  34. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 12, 2019.
  35. ^ "Norwegiancharts.com – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  36. ^ "Portuguesecharts.com – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved May 4, 2019.
  37. ^ "Official Scottish Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  38. ^ "Gaon Album Chart – Week 14, 2019". Gaon Chart (in Korean). Retrieved April 11, 2019.
  39. ^ "Spanishcharts.com – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 15, 2019.
  40. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  41. ^ "Swisscharts.com – Khalid – Free Spirit". Hung Medien. Retrieved April 17, 2019.
  42. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved April 13, 2019.
  43. ^ "New Zealand album certifications – Khalid – Free Spirit". Recorded Music NZ. Retrieved May 10, 2019.